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#103570 05/19/03 03:55 PM
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vika Offline OP
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as some of you know I have been living in Scotland during several years. but Edinbugh is a cosmopolitan city and I've never heard about a tradition called blackening before this e-mail has been sent around:

In reply to:



With XXX marriage now imminent it
has been brought to my attention that we should be planning his
blackening!

Those of you unaware of the evil customs of the North-East "The Blackening"
is what happens to a person just before their wedding and
requires the poor individual to be grabbed without warning, to be
tied up (generally to a tree or lamp post, sometimes on the back of a
truck!) and to have all manner of horrible things thrown at them,
traditionally beginning with tar/oil, hence the title.

The person can sometimes be stripped naked before this happens, but
we can provide a lab coat or alternative attire (suggestions include
a nice blouse/skirt ensemble from a charity shop!) to save a tiny
portion of their dignity (as well as saving their good clothes from
ruin).

It has been suggested that we might wish to do this after the next
meeting (Friday) when most people should be here and
not in the middle of an experiment.

Another suggestion was that we should start collecting ammunition and
stock-piling it in the microscope room on level one. So next time
you're at Asda, pick up an extra tin of Smart Price Baked Beans or if
you're feeling flush some Barbie spaghetti shapes or rice pudding or
tuna or... you get the picture - sticky stuff. Check out the back
of your tin cupboard at home for anything approaching its best before
date. On the day you can bring in some getting past it yoghurt.


But please, nothing that is so offensive it is likely to make the
blackenee throw up (this is not unheard of - I think the blackeners
were also more than a little queasy on the day in question!)


and they've done it! they've tied him up, although he managed to pretend that it hurts, untangled the ropes and started throwing things back at them - that was the best part!

here is a link on the origin of the tradition
http://www.orkneyjar.com/tradition/weddings/blacken.htm



#103571 05/19/03 04:06 PM
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Carpal Tunnel
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Wow--that is really strange, Vika! [shaking head e]


#103572 05/19/03 05:49 PM
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Pooh-Bah
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There's an equivalent of that kind of thing almost everywhere in the west, Vika. It usually happens on the last day of work before the behead ... sorry, I mean, wedding, or during the stag party (men's night out) prior to the day of execution. Something very similar and generally even more embarrassing is usually done to the woman in question as well.

Best one I was ever involved in was actually after the wedding itself, when we wired the groom's car's horn to the brake light circuit and filled the air conditioning vents full of confetti ...


#103573 05/20/03 04:09 PM
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vika Offline OP
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I thought that idea of blackening somebody was quite outrageous because I immideately imagined myself and my husband in the place of the poor lad. suprisingly, other married people - English and Scottish - took part in it.
the worst traditions die hard.


#103574 05/20/03 04:36 PM
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dxb Offline
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Oh! It's just a bit of harmful fun...what was that word again...epicaricacy.



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